FALLEN STAR: FINDING HOME
Directed by Vera Brunner-Sung, Valerie Stadler
One of the marvels of public art in San Diego is Do Ho Suh’s fantastic Fallen Star, a cottage and garden perched at a death-defying angle off the upper edge of an engineering building at UCSD. Since its 2012 appearance, as if tornadoed in from another world, the structure has elicited smiles and finger-pointing from students and visitors, many also from other places. But before Fallen Star arrived, its artist and the commissioners at the university’s Stuart Collection were met with cynicism about its meaning and its appropriateness.
As wondrous, probing, and accessible as Suh’s own work, FALLEN STAR: FINDING HOME pays tribute to the engineers who found inspiration in the unbelievable, as well as to the campus community, itself an artificial home for commuters, voyagers, and academic shooting stars. The documentary has audiences asking questions about the role of art in public spaces and how we talk about home and displacement in places like San Diego and the global university. The centerpiece of the documentary is the aerial flight of the cottage itself, shot with the adrenaline, suspense, and awe of a space launch.
Co-directed by Vera Brunner-Sung (Bella Vista, SDAFF ’14) and Valerie Sadler, FALLEN STAR: FINDING HOME captures the sweeping spirit of cross-disciplinary collaboration and the power of art to interpret the askew but exhilarating world we’re all aliens in. –Brian Hu